Police have confirmed early reports that the Nashville school shooter was a biological woman who identified as a transgender man.
During an evening press conference following the Monday shooting at The Covenant School, a private Christian school in Nashville, police chief John Drake identified the shooter by name and confirmed the shooter identified as transgender.
Drake said the shooting was a targeted attack and appeared to suggest the shooter’s identity played a role in the shooting. Another location was reportedly mentioned in the shooter’s writings, though Drake noted the shooter decided against the separate location due to “too much security.”
“We have a manifesto. We have some writings that we’re going over, ” Drake said when one reporter asked if the shooter had a motive. “We have a map drawn out of how this was all gonna take place.”
The Nashville police chief further detailed that two “AR-style” weapons — a rifle and a pistol — and a handgun were in the shooter’s possession. Drake said authorities believe two of the three weapons were legally purchased at a local shop.
Nashville Police Chief confirms the suspect in today's shooting at a Christian elementary school identified as a transgender: pic.twitter.com/TMF4lnxYlM
— Julio Rosas (@Julio_Rosas11) March 27, 2023
“The police department response was swift,” a police official said at a press conference outside the school. “Officers entered the first story of the school and began clearing it. They heard shots coming from the second level and they went toward the gunfire. When the officers got to the second level, they saw a shooter, a female, who was firing. The officers engaged her. She was fatally shot by responding police officers.”
The shooter reportedly entered the school through a side door and was armed with at least two “assault-type” rifles and a handgun, according to the director of the Police Department Media Relations Office, Don Aaron. The woman was fatally shot by police after arriving on the scene.
During the Small Business Administration’s Women’s Business Summit on Monday afternoon, President Biden repeated his call to enact stricter gun control legislation.
“It’s ripping our communities apart,” the President said, calling on Congress to pass an assault weapons ban. “We have to do more to protect our schools so they’re not turned into prisons.”
Details surrounding this story are still developing.